Mark Hemingway at Real Clear Investigations recently wrote a solid piece about the “data problem” with getting clean voter rolls and eradicating voter fraud.
He’s right, there is a data problem. And a management problem. And a competence problem. After all, government runs elections and government is pretty famously awful in all of those categories. But those are manifestations of a deeper problem that is going to dog the country in 2020 and almost assuredly beyond.
One of our two major parties opposes any attempts to enforce voting laws and block illegal voting, and has even begun making overt attempts to create legal voting pathways for non-citizens.
It’s fairly clear that the Democratic Party sees electoral benefit in non-citizens voting, and rightly so because of the gargantuan number of illegal Hispanics in the U.S. and first generation Hispanics are heavily Democratic voters.
Further, Democratic leadership sees a winning issue with the base and some Independents by painting Republicans as racistly trying to suppress the minority vote in their modest attempts to clean up voter rolls — even when those attempts are mandated by law.
Former Vice President Joe Biden is not only supposedly the most moderate among the Democratic presidential candidates, he’s just as quick as any new radical or old school Democrat to play the race card against Republicans.
Race is used dishonestly as a cudgel on virtually any issue. In 2012, speaking to a largely black Virginia audience about Mitt Romney’s plan to allow some deregulation of Wall Street, Biden told the crowd: “They’re going to put y’all back in chains.”
Pretty despicable, but also a hardened part of the Democratic platform in every election — and a real hot-button when connected with voting rights.
Republicans support basic voter identification laws to ensure ballot integrity. You just need to prove who you are to be able to cast that vote. This seems like it should be a bipartisan mom and apple pie issue.
But to Democrats like Biden, who supposedly represents the less radical arm of the Democratic Party, voter ID laws are an opportunity to slap down that tattered race card yet again. They purposely oppose every effort to create clean, up-to-date voter rolls.
Laws vary from state to state, but voter identification laws generally require that identification be presented before a voter reaches the ballot box. In some states, such as Florida where statewide vote margins can be razor thin, the ID must be shown at the polls, while other states only require it for voter registration. But in some states, such as Arizona, any ID, including a utility bill, will do.
Republicans say these laws protect against voter fraud by ineligible voters, including voting by illegal immigrants and double and triple voting.
For Democrats, it’s an opportunity to invigorate racial division and fear mongering. Here’s Biden at it again during a rally last month in South Carolina:
“You’ve got Jim Crow sneaking back in. You know what happens when you (black people) have an equal right to vote? They lose.”
So if Democrats see an opportunity to whip up racial tension among blacks and Hispanics that translate into more votes, they have zero motivation to actually try to ensure ballot box integrity. We’ve seen this recently in multiple states, including Texas, Florida and Pennsylvania, where attempts to make sure the voting rolls were cleaned up were met with vitriolic opposition and lawsuits.
The interesting fact is that there is no real evidence that voter ID laws actually suppress the votes of legal voters, including black voters. Even the left-of-center data site FiveThirtyEight substantially concludes this by looking at laws and voter turnout.
So does the left-of-center Brookings Institute in looking at Pennsylvania and Georgia, which both cleaned up their voting rolls prior to the 2018 election. Yet both saw huge jumps in black voter turnout — during a non-presidential midterm election.
“In fact, Georgia is one of the few states where black voter turnout exceeded white voter turnout in 2018. Moreover, its 2018 black voter turnout of 60 percent exceeded its turnout in the 2016 presidential election by 1 percent,” according to Brookings.
But this record black turnout, exceeding white turnout, does not stop Democrat Stacey Abrams, who lost a close race for Governor, to claim that she is the real winner because of voter suppression that limited the black vote. Democratic presidential contender Kamala Harris has said the same thing, both claiming to black audiences that Abrams was robbed of the victory by the GOP.
And of course San Francisco has voted to allow illegal immigrants and other noncitizens to vote in local elections. The fear by illegals that they will be identified by ICE has kept their numbers down, but the city has spent more than $300,000 in voter registration drives aimed at illegal residents. They really, really want illegals voting.
This is the undeniably glaring problem with trying to have clean, legal elections without fraud. Democrats don’t want it. They want both illegal votes of non-citizens, mostly Hispanics, and they want to fear monger blacks into high turnout while voting 90 percent Democrat.
Rod Thomson is an author, past Salem radio host, ABC TV commentator, former journalist and is Founder of The Revolutionary Act.